Category Archives: Annual Events

Can I Hit or Miss the 2015 Diwali in Toronto?

Diwali, also called “Deepavali”, the Hindu Festival of Lights, is an annual religious festival on a specific date in a lunar calendar. As such, it “floats” across the Gregorian calendar used by most countries.

So, did I miss Diwali 2015 in Toronto? After all, it’s an annual Toronto event in late autumn. Or is it still in the future?

One Diwali Candle for the Festival of Lights. Image by denharsh (Harsh Agrawal) under CC license.
One Diwali Candle for the Festival of Lights. Image by denharsh (Harsh Agrawal) under CC license.

When is Diwali 2015?

The central date for Diwali 2015 is Wednesday, November 11, which most of us will recognize as Remembrance Day.

The Gerrard India Bazaar already held festivities on the weekend of Nov. 8-9, 2015. That’s similar to the municipal and service organizations that run Remembrance Day ceremonies on the Sunday before Nov. 11; it’s more convenient to attend a family gathering on a weekend.

In fact, there have been at least a dozen Diwali events in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) since late October. A few remain for this week, such as the Brampton ISKCON’s event in Mississauga, and two at 61 Clairville Drive in Toronto. You can see the list on Deepavali.net’s web page for Canada.

At press time, there’s speculation that the fireworks display off Polson Pier, near Harbourfront, late Sunday night was a Diwali celebration. 680News reported on the hubbub in “Social media ‘explosion’ after Polson Pier fireworks“.  If this indeed had been a celebration of the Festival of Lights, there’s probably a lawyer in Toronto hoping to defend the freedom of religious expression against a charge of disturbing the peace. (Unconfirmed rumour said that another group had arranged for the fireworks… let’s see whether the media track it down).

However, the Festival of Lights is a great reason for celebration within Hinduism, Jainism and Sikhism; and the rest of us can join the street festivals such as the one I missed at the Gerrard India Market last weekend. There’s much more background in my previous article, “Why Must Toronto Ask When is Diwali in 2012?“.

Looking for More Annual Events or a Holiday in Toronto Canada?

My blog tracks many of the annual Toronto events that I find interesting, free or frugal.

Disclaimer: DeHaan Services has no relationship to the organizer(s); I am not reimbursed for writing this article. (The site is monetized; buy something through an ad and I should earn a commission). However, DeHaan Services does write web site or advertising copy for clients. Our skills are demonstrated in online articles in Decoded Science, Decoded Pregnancy and other online sites. That’s why DeHaan Services highlights those online articles on this site.

Click the “Toronto Events” category at the bottom of the left-hand column for recent articles in this category. Thanks!

Thanks for reading about 2015 Diwali in Toronto.

Remembrance Day Events in Toronto for 2015

Each year we can choose among a range of Remembrance Day events in Toronto. Of course, it’s fitting that most venues host Remembrance Day ceremonies annually; but here’s a reminder of the most obvious choices for your Remembrance Day 2015 in Toronto.

Of course, you know that Nov. 11 is always the date for Remembrance Day. It does not float to a convenient Friday or Monday; so even those who have a day off work cannot guarantee a long weekend in November. However, a few venues hold ceremonies on other dates.

Since 11am signals the “two minutes of silence”, most memorial services begin somewhere between 10:15 and 10:45am.

Cenotaph at Old City Hall in Toronto Ontario. Image by Wanda G (Wanda Gould) under CC license.
Cenotaph at Old City Hall in Toronto Ontario. Image by Wanda G (Wanda Gould) under CC license.

Remembrance Day 2015 at Queen’s Park in Toronto

Queen’s Park is the seat of the most senior government in Toronto: it’s the home of the provincial parliament.

Queen’s Park hosts a Remembrance Day ceremony annually, starting at 10:45am. Look for the crowd standing by a granite wall on the front lawn, south of the legislature. Take the #1 Yonge/University subway line to the Queen’s Park station, or the 506 Carlton streetcar to University Avenue.

At press time, the official web page for the Remembrance Day ceremony at Queen’s Park still shows the 2014 date.

City of Toronto 2015 Remembrance Day Ceremony

The City of Toronto hosts ceremonies at the Old City Hall cenotaph, as well as other locations. The events will be on Nov. 11, unless otherwise noted.

  • Old City Hall‘s ceremony also begins at 10:45am. It’s on the north-east corner of Queen and Bay. The 501 Queen streetcar is the best TTC choice for east/west commuters; or walk west from the #1 subway’s Queen St. station.
  • The East York Civic Centre‘s ceremony also begins at 10:45am. It’s at 850 Coxwell at Mortimer; take the 70 O’Connor bus north from the Coxwell station on the #2 Bloor-Danforth subway line.
  • The Etobicoke Civic Centre starts its service early, at 10:15am. It’s at 399 The West Mall, at Burnhamthorpe.
  • The North York service begins at 10:45, in the George Weston Recital Hall inside the Toronto Centre for the Arts. If you want to avoid a rainy day, this is one of the few indoor ceremonies. Take the #1 subway line to the North York station, and go to 5040 Yonge St.
  • The Scarborough Civic Centre, at 150 Borough Drive, hosts the ceremony on Sunday Nov. 8 at 2pm. Brimley, Ellesmere and McCowan are the major roads bordering this centre.
  • The York Civic Centre‘s Remembrance Day ceremony begins at 10:45am, at 2690 Eglinton Ave. West (at Keele).
  • Experience Remembrance Day in a military setting, at Fort York; also at 10:45am. Fort York is a Toronto museum and a national historic site. Day-long tours are under $10/person. Head to 250 Fort York Boulevard, north of Lake Shore Blvd and west of Bathurst. Look for the Strachan Avenue Military Cemetery.
  • The Metro Toronto Zoo conducts a brief Remembrance Day ceremony at 10:55am sharp at the Waterside Theatre. That’s in the Children’s Zoo Discovery Zone. Ask for directions when you arrive. Veterans (in uniform or wearing their medals), as well as uniformed members of the armed forces and civic EMS workers, gain free admission from 9:30-11am.
  • Many Toronto parks have cenotaphs or other war memorials. You may live or work near a park holding a Remembrance Day service; check your local free advertising newspaper or ask your city councillor, neighbours, or co-workers.

(Added Nov. 6, 2015). In the Beach area, for example, my city councillor just sent this list:

  • Sunday Nov. 8 at 1:30pm: A veterans’ parade marches from Shoppers’ World at Danforth and Victoria Park, to Legion Branch 11 on Dawes Road. A memorial service will begin there at 2pm.
  • Wednesday Nov. 11 at 11am: A Memorial Day ceremony will be held at the cenotaph in Kew Gardens, with a luncheon at the Baron Byng Legion.
  • Also Wed. Nov. 11, but at 2:30pm: A Remembrance Day ceremony in the Naval Club of Toronto on Gerrard St. (north side of Upper Gerrard, just west of Woodbine).

I’m sure your city councillor is eager to share a similar list of Remembrance Day events in Toronto for your ward.

Links to References for Remembrance Day in Toronto

This official City of Toronto web page for Remembrance Day mentions Old City Hall, the Civic Centres, and Fort York. Click on Nov. 11 on the Metro Toronto Zoo events page to learn more.

Part of Toronto’s military history is revealed by Benn & Jackman’s “Historic Fort York, 1793-1993” in the Canadian or American Kindle version. Fort York lost its first battle in the War of 1812. What happened next? How has Fort York changed over two centuries?

Remembrance Day Ceremonies in Ontario

I’ve just updated “GTA Remembrance Day 2014 Venues” with 2015 links and dates.

The Ontario government supplies a handy online guide to Remembrance Day ceremonies in Ontario. I’m not convinced it is complete, but you may find exactly what you seek.

Looking for More Annual Events or a Holiday in Toronto Canada?

My blog tracks many of the annual Toronto events that I find interesting, free or frugal.

Disclaimer: DeHaan Services has no relationship to the organizer(s); I am not reimbursed for writing this article. I do enjoy writing about annual Toronto events; and I consider this particular post to be a public service announcement. (The site is monetized; buy something through an ad and I should earn a commission).

DeHaan Services does write web site or advertising copy for clients. Our skills are demonstrated in online articles in Decoded Science, Decoded Pregnancy and other online sites. That’s why DeHaan Services highlights those online articles on this site.

Click the “Toronto Events” category at the bottom of the left-hand column for recent articles in this category. Thanks!

Thanks for reading about Remembrance Day events in Toronto for 2015.

Woofstock 2015 in Toronto for Furry Fun with your Dog

(Added this paragraph on Nov. 18, 2015): It’s time for winter Woofstock, on Nov. 21 & 22, from 10am-6pm at Exhibition Stadium. It’s indoors, in the Queen Elizabeth Exhibit Hall. The main web site link still works, but the details have changed. Tickets for winter Woofstock are $10 plus tax; this is still a frugal event in Toronto. Where else will your pooch learn Doga (dog yoga)? Here’s a map with some parks near the CNE, if you want to tire out your canine companion ahead of time.

Map of Waterfront Toronto Parks Nearest the CNE. Image (c) by Mike DeHaan via Google Maps
Map of Waterfront Toronto Parks Nearest the CNE.

The annual Woofstock Toronto dog festival returns to Woodbine Park in late September 2015. Here’s your chance to attend a free dog show with your own canine.

"Woofstock in Toronto in 2009" by ltdan (Dan Dickinson) under CC license.
“Woofstock in Toronto in 2009” by ltdan (Dan Dickinson) under CC license.

The Autumn Woofstock 2015 Festival in Toronto

Woofstock prides itself on being “the largest outdoor festival for dogs in North America”. You and your pooch can expect:

  • The Purina Pro Plan Dog Stars perform feats of agility and speed.
  • Enter your pooch in a fashion show, or race your pug or dachshund in their separate categories. Or just watch!
  • Listen to experts in caring for your family pet.
  • Other entertainment including photo sessions, dog tricks, and lure chasing.
"Size Contrast between two dogs at Woofstock 2015" image (c) by Linda DeHaan
“Size Contrast at Woofstock 2015” image (c) by Linda DeHaan

If that’s too much excitement, you can still have fun with your dog! Head south to cross Lake Shore Blvd at the traffic light and walk you dog along the Martin Goodman Trail for a while. Or head north to a restaurant on Queen St.; many have water dishes outside to keep your dog well hydrated.

"A dog on the Lure Obstacle Course at Woofstock 2015" image (c) by Linda DeHaan
“On the Lure Obstacle Course at Woofstock 2015” image (c) by Linda DeHaan

Admission to Toronto Woofstock 2015 is free. Head to Woodbine Park between Eastern Avenue and Lake Shore Blvd East, on the east side of Coxwell. The 501 Queen streetcar travels just a block farther north; the Coxwell 22 South bus comes down from the #2 Bloor-Danforth subway line.

(Added Sept. 26, 2015): Woofstock also offers a free shuttle service from a parking lot on Cherry Street in the Port Lands area, about 4Km south-west from Woodbine Park. That’s an absolutely sweet deal, compared to finding parking during a free annual event such as Woofstock in Toronto.

"Map of Woodbine Park, Toronto" by Mike DeHaan (c) via Google Maps
“Map of Woodbine Park, Toronto” by Mike DeHaan (c) via Google Maps

I’d written “The Whereabouts of Woofstock 2012 in Toronto“, and  usually updated that article as needed. The venue has changed, but the spirit of enjoying your canine companion has remained and grown over the years. Looking back, this autumn Toronto event seems to be a compromise date between the late spring and late autumn Woofstock festivals of previous years.

(Added Sept. 22, 2015). The dates for the 2015 Woofstock in Toronto are Saturday & Sunday, Sept. 26 & 27, 2015; from 10am through 6pm. We got there at 11am on Saturday; each of the vendors had a line-up for freebies, and the all-day lure obstacle course was running full tilt. These next two dogs were champing at the bit for their turn; note the strain in their owner’s arm. They later caught the lure; one chased while the other ambushed from ahead. That was the only successful catch that I saw.

"Two Dogs are Next in Line for the 2015 Woofstock Lure Obstacle Course" image (c) by Mike DeHaan
“Next in Line for the 2015 Woofstock Lure Obstacle Course” image (c) by Mike DeHaan

The official Woofstock Toronto web site has more details, of course, including the online forms so you can register your dog in one of the contests.

If you buy dry kibble in 25-pound bags or smaller, an airtight pet food container can help keep the aroma – and your dog’s appetite – under control, and help the dry dog food stay fresh.

The Milk-Bone “Brushing Chews” booth was a really popular line-up when we were at Woodbine Park.

"People and Dogs are Lined up for Milk-Bone Brushing Chews at Woofstock 2015 in Toronto" image (c) by Mike DeHaan
“Lined up for Milk-Bone Brushing Chews at Woofstock 2015 in Toronto” image (c) by Mike DeHaan

Looking for More Annual Events or a Holiday in Toronto Canada?

My blog tracks many frugal or free events in Toronto.

Disclaimer: DeHaan Services has no relationship to the organizer(s); I am not reimbursed for writing this article. (The site is monetized; buy something through an ad and I should earn a commission). However, DeHaan Services does write web site or advertising copy for clients. Our skills are demonstrated in online articles in Decoded Science, Decoded Pregnancy and other online sites. That’s why DeHaan Services highlights those online articles on this site.

Click the “Toronto Events” category at the bottom of the left-hand column for recent articles in this category.

Thank you for reading about Woofstock 2015 in Toronto.